Doctor leads off campus healthy-cooking series

Dr. Preston Maring, the Kaiser-Oakland doctor known for starting the hospital’s farmers’ markets, will show off his best slicing and dicing techniques in a guest appearance on campus Thursday.

Dr. Preston MaringHe might sound like a surgeon, but he’s not. Maring is a gynecologist and administrator who believes that fresh food and simple home cooking help people stay healthy. He’ll be showing off tips for quick and easy food preparation to kick off University Health Services’ fall series of cooking classes, “Cook Well.” The series is part Berkeley’s Health*Matters initiative.

The workshop takes place from 12:10 to 1 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 29, at at Alumni House. All participants will receive a cutting board, an entry into a prize drawing and a copy of Maring’s recipes. Enrollment, open to anyone with a CalNet ID, can be done by logging into the UC Learning Center and searching for the class. 

Maring pioneered what he says was the first hospital-based farmers’ market in 2003, at Kaiser-Permanente’s Oakland medical center, with the idea of making it easier for people to get their fresh fruit and veggies. Now Kaiser, which is cosponsoring Maring’s appearance, has 21 farmers’ markets in Northern California alone. 

He also posts simple, seasonal recipes for healthy meals online; recent posts were for roasted tomato pasta , frozen grapes and watermelon gazpacho.

Health*Matters classes promote skills in cooking grains and plant-based meals.